It’s that time once again, as the countdown to the end of 2015 quickly approaches we take a personal look back on familiar names, features and musicians’ best releases of the past 12 months. Circuit Sweet will be hosting takeovers from the featured artists of the site with their personal top 5 releases of the year.
Continuing our annual end of year tradition we let our favourites take over the site to tell us the records that have made their end of year lists, their favourite events/gigs and what we can look forward to from them next year.
The next label take over comes from the lovely Didier Gosset of Brussels-based and Brussels-focused DIY record label Black Basset Records. We adore this label, we truly believe they are one of the hardest working and inspirational DIY labels out there and what’s even better after supporting this label for some time this year we personally got to meet the brilliant people behind it and that was a highlight of this year for us. We hand over to Black Basset Records to find out more of their favourite releases of the past 12 months.
Our top 5 releases of the year, in no specific order:
La Jungle – s/t:
Is this the best Belgian record released in 2015? It probably is. On paper, it’s yet another guitar/drums duo. In real life, their music is so trancey it has been nicknamed “the techno music of 2015” by some. A band to see live, as often as you can. Be it supporting Nissenenmondai, Pneu, Algiers or LA Priest, we are yet to see an audience not succumbing to this: https://lajungle.bandcamp.com/
PS: Well, fair enough, the police forces are not massive fans by the look of it:
B R I Q U E V I L L E – s/t:
Don’t go thinking this top is Belgium-centric, but BRIQUEVILLE? Where do I start? Masked people, doom-ish instrumental post-metal, no promotion, plenty of gossiping bout where they come from, first records buried across Belgium with GPS coordinates unveiled late at night on Facebook that led to people digging in public parks at 2 in the morning. A secretive act for a quality record, judge by yourself:
L’EFFONDRAS – s/t:
France’s best-kept secret, hopefully not for long. So addictive it nearly drove us mad at BBR towers. And a cool artwork to boot: https://leffondras.bandcamp.com/album/lp-leffondras
SVALBARD – One Day All This Will End.
Bristol’s finest at its very best (again). No need to listen to it before purchase, it’s a must have. Well, not according to our neighbours, but who cares really? Astonishing band live, and nice and friendly people with that! https://svalbard.bandcamp.com/
ELECTRIC)NOISE(MACHINE – Pardon:
There’s nothing barring us from listing our own releases, right? Apart from the fact we might look like sad self-centered bores? Anyway, that album from our very own “talibans of sound” (yes, that’s their in-house nickname) was so long in the making that we had nearly lost any hope to listen to it one day. Our conclusion: it was more than worth the wait after all. Dance to it until you drop: https://electricnoisemachine.bandcamp.com/
BEST GIG OF THE YEAR
A very tricky choice, so a suspended sentence on this one:
From a label point of view, QUADRUPEDE at Arctangent was a very special one. And we think this guy will agree:
From a “performance” perspective, THEO at LR6 in Brussels (with OLYMPIANS). We have already claimed everywhere that Sam Knight’s album is pure brilliance, we now know for sure that all girls must be in love with him and all boys want to be him. http://www.shootmeagain.com/photos/4874_theo_bruxelles_10-04-2015
From a “we’ll show you how to turn a venue upside down in no time and leave hundreds of people sweaty and smiling” perspective: LA DISPUTE at De Klinker in Aarschot. No decent video of this show available so let’s watch this one instead:
Label Highlights of the year
Two releases this year, and two additions to our roster: Electric)Noise(Machine and Ed Wood Jr, some massive shows by our personal standards (Billions of Comrades supporting And So I Watch You From Afar, Ed Wood Jr sharing the stage with Maserati, etc), Quadrupède at ATG as explained above, and some quite unreal experiences such as Mont-Doré bulldozing trough a massive crowd at Wiels (Brussels’ contemporary art museum), Electric)Noise(Machine‘s adventures on Brussels “summer city beach” or Ed Wood Jr recording a live session on radio while Brussels’ lockdown due to the heightened terrorist threat was being put in place and their evening show cancelled for security reasons.
One big downer though: Castles have decided to call it a day, the Fragment festival in Manchester in June becoming their last show ever.
Artist/Band to watch for 2016
La Jungle! Have you lot listened to that Bandcamp link above or what?
Plans for the New Year
Plenty of plans! There’s a new Mont-Doré album coming in Spring, which is being finalised as I type with Magnus Lindberg (Cult of Luna). Billions of Comrades will be entering the studio in January to record their second album, and Ed Wood Jr is working on a very cool project which will see a limited edition record being released as official soundtrack to a photo exhibition scheduled to take place in 2016 in Lille, Memphis and Los Angeles among others.
We also have two more releases in the pipeline, which we are keeping secret at the moment, sad bunch of teases that we are!
Overall, we also have to reconsider our plans regarding “vinyl only” releases, as the current situation with the European pressing plants is becoming so terrible in terms of delays that tiny entities such as ours have to explore other approaches. It won’t stop us having fun though, that’s for sure.